The 23rd Session of the Asia-Pacific Regional Space Agency Forum - Manila Philippines Nov 2016 APRSAFRecognizing the growing importance of space, The Philippines is set to host the 23rd Asia-Pacific Regional Space Agency Forum (APRSAF-23) on 15-18 November 2016 at the Sofitel Philippine Plaza Hotel, Pasay City.

This year’s APRSAF is co-organized by the Philippine Council for Industry, Energy and Emerging Technology Research and Development – Department of Science and Technology (DOST-PCIEERD) of the Philippines and the Ministry of Education, Culture, Sports, Science and Technology (MEXT) of Japan and the Japan Aerospace Exploration Agency (JAXA).

With the theme “Building a Future through Space Science, Technology and Innovation,” the APRSAF-23 will feature working group discussions such as Space Applications, Space Technology, Space Environment Utilization, and Space Education to share information about the activities and future plans of each country in these respective areas.

Speakers in this year’s forum include Secretary Fortunato T. de la Peña (Secretary of DOST), Dr. Rowena Cristina L. Guevara (Undersecretary for Research and Development, DOST), Mr. Ryuichiro Shirama (Deputy Director General, Research and Development Bureau of MEXT), and Ms. Noer Laela Sari (Head of Management Administration and Protocol Subdivision National Institute of Aeronautics and Space, Indonesia).

Side events leading to the APRSAF-23 will also be conducted separately outside Metro Manila. These events include a Water Rocket and Can Satellite Competition organized by the Science Education Institute (DOST-SEI) and the 3rd Asia-Pacific Space Generation Workshop (AP-SGW), all to be held on 12-13 November 2016 at the University of the Philippines Los Baños.

Other APRSAF-related activities during the forum proper will also take place. These include the Kibo-ABC Initiative Workshop, Sentinel Asia and Space Applications for Environment (SAFE) Initiative Workshop, and a Space Generation Mentoring Session (organized by the US Department of State).

Another workshop on “Building Regional Space Policy Cooperation in Asia (organized by Policy Alternatives Research Institute, the University of Tokyo and the National Institute of Advanced Studies, India),” which aims to formulate a group to undertake space policy analysis in the region, will also happen as a side event on 16 November 2016 at the Century Park Hotel, Manila.

Established in 1993, the APRSAF is the largest space-related conference in the Asia-Pacific region. The forum brings together people from various space agencies, governmental bodies, international organizations, private companies, and universities from over 40 countries and regions to discuss and enhance international cooperation for space activities within the region.

Although the Philippines does not yet have a formal space agency, the DOST-PCIEERD launched the National Space Development Program (NSDP) last September 2015 to push for the legislation of a national space policy and creation of a Philippine space agency in light of recent developments, including the launch of the DIWATA-1 microsatellite last April 2016. Recently, lawmakers have filed House Bill 3637 and Senate Bill 1211, which both aim to legislate a Philippine Space Development and Utilization Policy and create a Philippine Space Agency.

Learn more about Asia-Pacific Regional Space Agency Forum (APRSAF) here: https://www.aprsaf.org/